St. Louis, MO: Ss. Agatha and Lucy Catholic Church nearly saw a meltdown of the traditional reading of St. John's Passion this past Sunday, as the choir director began to question publicly why the musicians got assigned the part of the rabid crowd every year.
John Degnan, choir director, said that the situation reeked of "subtle discrimination against those of courage and perfect pitch." He continued: "It's just that every year, being forced to shout out 'Crucify him! Crucify him!' begins to wear on a group's self-image," he says. "It's hard on our tender egos. Also, it strains our vocal cords for the upcoming Eucharistic parts."
Other choir members were similarly uncomfortable with the role of killing an innocent man sent by God to save them. "It's just not right," soprano Elisa Cartwright said. "Honestly, I think that those words ought to be said by a computer generated voice and projected or something. I mean, who wants to say them aloud? We're not about all that."
Pianist Joellen Jordan agreed it was quite uncomfortable. "We're a choir, for pity's sake. We're all about singing 'Were you there when they crucified my Lord?' Everyone knows--we're on Jesus' side. This is just confusing."
The pastor of the parish, Fr. Michael Challon, smiled at the controversy and said "God bless them all. But you know, I get to die on a cross every Passion Sunday, and yet, I manage."